District Energy: DE is the terminology used by the industry for
the integration of District Heating and District Cooling. Heating and cooling systems in total account for 46% of global energy use. Therefore, these two systems (DH & DC) represent a huge potential for further reducing CO2 emissions.
District Heating is an energy distribution network that transports heated water generated in a centralized utility through piping to residential homes and commercial buildings primarily in urban areas.
District Heating is clean, efficient and cost-effective due to its flexibility, scale of production and optimal heat generation conditions. The heat is often obtained from a CHP (Combined Heat & Power) plant burning fossil fuels or increasingly also biomass a.o. District Heating plants can provide higher efficiencies and better pollution control than localized boilers.
Between the CHP plant and the distribution network there is a transmission pipeline through which heated water is pumped further onto the distribution network and into the individual buildings. The cooled water is then pumped back to the plant for re-heating.
The fundamental idea of District Heating is to use energy that is already available and that otherwise would be wasted and cause pollution. In order to reduce primary energy demand and CO2 emissions, District Heat generation is often based on heat recycled from mainly CHP Plants, which includes a variety of fuels such as renewables, natural gas and oil. Alternatively it could be surplus energy from Waste-to-Energy plants, other power plants or industries. The positive economic and environmental benefits are discussed in this whitepaper.